Gear

Finding A Sleeping Pad For Side Sleepers

by Andy Amick

I’m a side sleeper.  One who prefers to curl my legs way up into an almost fetal position when I’m sleeping. The other night while testing out my Tour Divide sleep setup, I woke up several times with pain in my bottom knee when sleeping on my side.  It occurred when sleeping on either side […]

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My Tour Divide Cockpit Setup

by Andy Amick

As I write this, it’s 99 days to go until the Tour Divide starts.  Holy smokes! It’s time to start dialing the gear and riding a lot more.  June 13th will be here before we know it. Hover over the image above to see details on each component Bikepacking 2700+ miles creates a few challenges […]

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Stealing My Kids’ Toys For Bikepacking Gear

by Andy Amick

Sometimes the kids and their toys have to make sacrifices, even if they aren’t aware of the sacrifice at the time.  While doing more tinkering with gear and my bikepacking setup, I realized the foam ammo balls my kids shoot at each other would make a great end cap for my tarp pole. The tarp […]

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Homemade Tyvek Wallet – 2 1/2 Years Later

by Andy Amick

When looking for a new wallet, not many people look at an envelope as an option.  Ok, there may only be a handful of us crazy enough to actually think this.  But a single Tyvek envelope can be transformed into an everyday wallet and hold up to daily wear and tear for over two years. […]

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The Ultimate HIker’s Gear Guide By Andrew Skurka

by Andy Amick

Although long distance hiker Andrew Skurka‘s book is titled as a gear guide, it offers some good background information on his style of hiking and how he decides on what gear to carry for each trip.  I found the information on planning for a trip and the sample gear lists to be the best parts […]

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6 Lightweight Shelter Options

by Andy Amick

After detailing my own shelter system, I thought I would list a few other options for bikepackers or backpackers looking into lightweight shelters.  There are A LOT of options, and a full list of all gear shelters would go on for pages.  This post details 6 shelters which have different designs and materials.  Some of […]

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A 3 Pound Bikepacking Sleep System

by Andy Amick

The sleep system is the one set of gear that allows for turning long bike rides into bikepacking trips.  It’s also one of the areas with the most options, configurations, and price points. My first bikepacking (in the backyard) trip utilized a 5 pound tent, a 5 pound sleeping bag, and 2 pound sleeping pad. […]

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Why Buy Cottage Gear

by Andy Amick

As someone who grew up in a small business family and now runs a cottage gear company, I guess I have a slightly deeper desire to buy and use cottage gear when possible.  But what drives other people to buy gear from a cottage company rather than a large mainstream gear company? This post digs […]

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Cottage Gear Defined

by Andy Amick

When you get into the world of lightweight or ultralight camping gear, a large majority of that gear is made by very small companies.  A lot of these companies are even single person operations with gear made in their basement or garage.  The term “cottage” gear maker is given to these sorts of companies. Obviously, […]

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Bikepacking Seatbags – The J.Paks SeatPak

by Andy Amick

The seat bag, frame bag, and handlebar bag are the three main bags used for carrying gear on the bike for bikepacking.  A few months ago, I decided to finally buy a seat bag to replace my homemade coroplast bags. Since local companies are important to me, my choice came down to J.Paks and Bedrock, […]

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